Latest USA administration moves are rising a lot of concerns towards the IT community, and a lot of concerns worldwide.
There are, of course, different sentiments related to political beliefs, ethics and moral considerations that should be considered. I will not enter here in the political, ethical and moral arena to present my personal point of view on the specific subject but I would like make some considerations on the IT sector reactions to what is happening.
It is an easy prediction that the future economic outlook will be impacted by USA administration approach and actions, and this can cause understandable reactions on the various stakeholders.
It is interesting to note the different approach from companies that need a global market to survive, as the technological ones, and the ones that rely on local and few other markets.
This difference is, nowadays, more evident on the IT (SW, HW, Services) sector, a highly technological and advanced area that has 2 important needs:
1) highly qualified and skilled personnel
2) a global market to act on
Setting aside the ethical and moral considerations (which are, don’t get me wrong, imperative to anyone), from a business point of view there is no doubt that some markets (as the technological one) need globalization more than other to prosper and survive.
The IT market, although, cover a critical position here, since it is the engine of the 4th industrial revolution and it is facing, as of now, a growing resistance from the older economical model players; comments and reactions I have seen on various platforms are mostly expression of this growing sentiment.
The IT market needs, market historically leaded by USA companies, has been able to growth thanks mainly to innovation, openness and intercultural exchange.
People working in this sector belongs to different ethnic groups, countries and religions bringing, due to this diversity, high value thanks to their experience and approach. In order to create something new (which is what all the Information technology industry is about) a different approach to things is needed. It is not a case that the IT industry in USA has historically found in the open approach (in terms of market and human resources) a tremendous advantage which brought USA to lead the IT market.
IT CEOs are understandably concerned that the environment that made them prosper now can change dramatically. USA administration announced economic protectionism and other rumored or in place actions (last but not least the improperly so called “muslim” ban) could, as a matter of facts, harms those company’s ability to growth and prosper.
In this view it is totally understandable the concerns of important CEOs towards the present and future actions of USA government and the need to address those concerns openly in public.
If, as rumor says, one of the next moves will be to target H-1B visas (working visas) this will heavily affect those companies that will be forced to rethink their approach to the technological market may be forcing them, as an example, to move R&D facilities to more friendly shores.
The truth behind this is that the need for qualified people in the IT sector is still growing to a rate that there is no single nation, nor even USA, that can provide the resources needed to back up this development; therefore the need for qualified and skilled people coming from virtually anywhere is imperative for this sector.
Like it or not some political issues does affect the economic of some sectors, therefore is absolutely understandable that the technology market reacts toward an approach that can undermine its chance to grow, expand, and ultimately bring value to a country in terms of economic wealth and image.
It is worth to notice also that the IT sector is changing, the technologies are shifting from products to services that need a worldwide market to be remunerative. From Cloud to IoT, passing through security and Big data all the recent technology trends calls for the most open and widest possible market.
But there is another factor to take into account; the consolidated IT technologies that need a limited innovation approach are now offered also by emerging competitors in countries outside USA as china and others.
Even if not ready to provide, in most cases, a disruptive technologies advance those companies are able to produce, in the consolidated technology market, a stable product implementation and constant improvement in a price\competitive fashion. Quality issues in consolidated technology fields are a minor concerns since products tend to be aligned.
If we add the geopolitical issues that lead, as an example, some countries to start looking for alternatives to USA products (China, Russia, Pakistan, India are an example, but understandable the middle east area in the future) the picture is more clear.
This is not politic, but economy.
One further economical consideration, the inevitable shift to a so called “data economy” (the real meaning of the 4th industrial revolution) is something that should be driven. Closing the economy to the old models although make you feel in your “comfort zone” will just retard the inevitable, creating more later costs to adapt.
But there are also ethical and moral consideration to be taken into account, and most of those CEO for once demonstrate that business and ethics can match, probably due not only to their business but also their heritage.
- Top Silicon Valley investor calls on tech CEOs to speak out against Trump’s immigration order (businessinsider.com)
- Silicon Valley denounces Trump immigration ban (rappler.com)
- Technology companies blast Donald Trump’s travel ban as Airbnb offers to house refugees denied entry to the US (telegraph.co.uk)
- Google CEO Sundar Pichai fears impact of Trump immigration order, recalls staff (techcrunch.com)
- Google Recalls its Staff After Trump’s Immigration Ban (wccftech.com)
- Google’s largest ever crisis fund raising $4 million for immigration-related organizations (9to5google.com)
- What CEOs are saying about the Muslim ban, and what they actually mean (mashable.com)
- Google, Apple and other top US firms are rushing to counter Donald Trump’s immigration curbs (scroll.in)
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